National Register of Historic Places


Robert Grant Ranch

Wheatland

Date Added to Register

Thursday, September 07, 1995

Smithsonian Number

48PL901

Read all about it

The Grant Ranch is situated north of Richeau Creek in the rolling hills of Platte County, Wyoming. Surrounding land is used for both grazing as well as the production of hay. Irrigation canals, reservoirs, as well as the creek provide water for farming purposes. The trees that surround the original buildings are cottonwoods, blue spruce and the vegetation is mature with large lilac bushes and native grasses. Corrals constructed from barbed wire and vertical log slabs are an integral part of the ranch. The buildings, structures, land and vegetation create a cultural landscape which was started in 1890 and is still used in the same manner over 100 years later. The Grant Ranch is an interesting mixture of hand crafted vernacular buildings along with buildings that were moved in and modern buildings that help maintain the economic vitality of the ranch. Within the ranch's historic district there are a variety of buildings as well as structures such as an irrigation ditch, the remnants of a lime kiln, and a dipping vat. The district also contains a small family cemetery.

The Grant Ranch is a representative Wyoming ranch which was established by Scottish immigrants in 1891. At the time the Grant Ranch was started on 160 acres of land, ranching in Wyoming had begun to change from large herds grazed on the open-range to smaller herds of cattle grazed on both public and private land. The founder of the ranch, Robert Grant, used his expertise from working in coal mines in Scotland, where he built drifts and supports, to construct very solid buildings at his ranch. He constructed an eight room stone house, a barn and other out buildings. Grant used skills he learned in Scotland to create lime in his lime kiln. The house, outhouse, barn and even the chicken coop were constructed with limestone and mortar made from Grant's own lime kiln.

Robert Grant joined relatives and friends who settled around Chugwater and what later became Slater. He was not one of the wealthy Scottish investors who came to the West to enlarge his holdings but instead was a man of modest means who used local materials to create his ranch. Grant slowly enlarged his holdings in what was Laramie County but eventually became Platte County. He and his wife Margaret helped expand the ranch by filing on land using among other legislation, the Desert Land and Homestead Acts. When Slater was no longer viable as a agricultural support community, the Slater Bank Building was moved for reuse to the Grant Ranch. The Grant Ranch is still in operation by the Grant family.

1917 Photo of Grant Ranch on file at the State Historic Preservation Office

Department of State Parks & Cultural Resources